§ 4.135.

HISTORIC PRESERVATION COMMISSION

GENERAL. There is hereby created a Historic Preservation Commission, which shall advise the City on historic preservation matters, participate in processes that involve historic or cultural resources, and take such other actions concerning historic preservation as may be prescribed by ordinance. The Historic Preservation Commission shall consist of seven members nominated by the Mayor and subject to approval by a majority of the Board of Supervisors.

The term and tenure of all members sitting on the Landmarks Preservation Advisory Board, created under Article 10 of the Planning Code, as of the effective date of this section shall terminate on December 31, 2008. Of the original appointments to the Historic Preservation Commission, four shall be for a four-year term and three for a two-year term as follows; the odd-numbered seats shall be for four-year terms and the even-numbered seats shall be for two-year terms. After the expiration of the original terms, all appointments shall be for four-year terms, provided however, that a member may holdover until a successor has been nominated by the Mayor and approved by the Board of Supervisors. There shall be no limit on the number of terms a member may serve.

The original nominations shall be made no later than 31 days after the date of the election creating this section. If the Mayor fails to nominate an original appointment within said period, the nomination for the original appointment may be made by the President of the Board of Supervisors, subject to the approval of a majority of the Board of Supervisors.

Within 60 days of the expiration of a term or other vacancy the Mayor shall nominate a qualified person to fill the vacant seat for the term, or the remainder of the term, subject to approval by a majority of the Board of Supervisors who shall hold a public hearing and vote on the nomination within 60 days of the Mayor’s transmittal of the nomination to the Clerk of the Board of Supervisors. If the Mayor fails to make such nomination within 60 days, the nomination may be made by the President of the Board of Supervisors, subject to the approval of a majority of the Board of Supervisors. The appointment shall become effective on the date the Board of Supervisors adopts a motion approving the nomination or after 60 days from the date the Mayor transmits the nomination to the Clerk of the Board of Supervisors if the Board of Supervisors fails to act.

Members may be removed by the appointing officer only pursuant to Section 15.105.

QUALIFICATIONS. In addition to the specific requirements set forth below, members of the Historic Preservation Commission shall be persons specially qualified by reason of interest, competence, knowledge, training and experience in the historic, architectural, aesthetic, and cultural traditions of the City, interested in the preservation of its historic structures, sites and areas, and residents of the City. Six of the members of the Historic Preservation Commission shall be specifically qualified in the following fields:

1. Seats 1 and 2: licensed architects meeting the Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualifications Standards for historic architecture;

2. Seat 3: an architectural historian meeting the Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualifications Standards for architectural history with specialized training and/or demonstrable experience in North American or Bay Area architectural history;

3. Seat 4: an historian meeting the Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualifications Standards for history with specialized training and/or demonstrable experience in North American or Bay Area history;

4. Seat 5: an historic preservation professional or professional in a field such as law, land use, community planning or urban design with specialized training and/or demonstrable experience in historic preservation or historic preservation planning.

5. Seat 6 shall be specially qualified in one of the following fields or in one of the fields set forth for Seats 1, 2, or 3;

a. A professional archeologist meeting the Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualification Standards for Archeology;

b. A real estate professional or contractor who has demonstrated a special interest, competence, experience, and knowledge in historic preservation;

c. A licensed structural engineer with at least four years of experience in seismic and structural engineering principals applied to historic structures; or

d. A person with training and professional experience with materials conservation.

Seat 7 shall be an at large seat subject to the minimum qualifications set forth above.

LANDMARK AND HISTORIC DISTRICT DESIGNATIONS. The Historic Preservation Commission shall have the authority to recommend approval, disapproval, or modification of landmark designations and historic district designations under the Planning Code to the Board of Supervisors. The Historic Preservation Commission shall send recommendations regarding landmarks designations to the Board of Supervisors without referral or recommendation of the Planning Commission. The Historic Preservation Commission shall refer recommendations regarding historic district designations to the Planning Commission, which shall have 45 days to review and comment on the proposed designation, which comments, if any, shall be forwarded to the Board of Supervisors together with the Historic Preservation Commission’s recommendation. Decisions of the Historic Preservation Commission to disapprove designation of a landmark or historic district shall be final unless appealed to the Board of Supervisors.

CERTIFICATES OF APPROPRIATENESS. The Historic Preservation Commission shall approve, disapprove, or modify certificates of appropriateness for work to designated landmarks or within historic districts. For minor alterations, the Historic Preservation Commission may delegate this function to staff, whose decision may be appealed to the Historic Preservation Commission.

For projects that require multiple planning approvals, the Historic Preservation Commission must review and act on any Certificate of Appropriateness before any other planning approval action. For projects that (1) require a conditional use permit or permit review under Section 309, et seq., of the Planning Code and (2) do not concern an individually landmarked property, the Planning Commission may modify any decision on a Certificate of Appropriateness by a 2/3 vote, provided that the Planning Commission shall apply all applicable historic resources provisions of the Planning Code.

For projects that are located on vacant lots, the Planning Commission may modify any decision on a Certificate of Appropriateness by a two-thirds vote, provided that the Planning Commission shall apply all applicable historic resources provisions of the Planning Code.

The Historic Preservation Commission or Planning Commission’s decision on a Certificate of Appropriateness shall be final unless appealed to the Board of Appeals, which may modify the decision by a 4/5 vote; provided, however, that if the project requires Board of Supervisors approval or is appealed to the Board of Supervisors as a conditional use, the decision shall not be appealable to the Board of Appeals, but rather to the Board of Supervisors, which may modify the decision by a majority vote.

SIGNIFICANT OR CONTRIBUTORY BUILDING AND CONSERVATION DISTRICT DESIGNATIONS IN THE C-3 DISTRICTS. The Historic Preservation Commission shall have the authority to recommend approval, disapproval, or modification of Significant or Contributory building and Conservation District designations under the Planning Code to the Board of Supervisors. The Historic Preservation Commission shall send recommendations regarding Significant or Contributory Buildings to the Board of Supervisors without referral or recommendation of the Planning Commission. The Historic Preservation Commission shall refer recommendations regarding Conservation District designations to the Planning Commission, which shall have 45 days to review and comment on the proposed designation, which comments, if any, shall be forwarded to the Board of Supervisors together with the Historic Preservation Commission’s recommendation, Decisions of the Historic Preservation Commission to disapprove designation of a Significant or Contributory building or Conservation District shall be final unless appealed to the Board of Supervisors.

ALTERATION OF SIGNIFICANT OR CONTRIBUTORY BUILDINGS OR BUILDINGS IN CONSERVATION DISTRICTS IN THE C-3 DISTRICTS. The Historic Preservation Commission shall have the authority to determine if a proposed alteration is a Major Alteration or a Minor Alteration. The Historic Preservation Commission shall have the authority to approve, disapprove, or modify applications for permits to alter or demolish designated Significant or Contributory buildings or buildings within Conservation Districts. For Minor Alterations, the Historic Preservation Commission may delegate this function to staff, whose decision may be appealed to the Historic Preservation Commission.

For projects that require multiple planning approvals, the Historic Preservation Commission must review and act on any permit to alter before any other planning approval action. For projects that (1) require a conditional use permit or permit review under Section 309, et seq., of the Planning Code and (2) do not concern a designated Significant (Categories I and II) or Contributory (Category III only) building, the Planning Commission may modify any decision on a permit to alter by a 2/3 vote, provided that the Planning Commission shall apply all applicable historic resources provisions of the Planning Code.

For projects that are located on vacant lots, the Planning Commission may modify any decision on a permit to alter by a two-thirds vote, provided that the Planning Commission shall apply all applicable historic resources provisions of the Planning Code.

The Historic Preservation Commission’s or Planning Commission’s decision on a permit to alter shall be final unless appealed to the Board of Appeals, which may modify the decision by a 4/5 vote; provided, however, that if the project requires Board of Supervisors approval or is appealed to the Board of Supervisors as a conditional use, the decision shall not be appealable to the Board of Appeals, but rather to the Board of Supervisors, which may modify the decision by a majority vote.

MILLS ACT CONTRACTS. The Historic Preservation Commission shall have the authority to recommend approval, disapproval, or modification of historical property contracts to the Board of Supervisors, without referral or recommendation of the Planning Commission.

PRESERVATION ELEMENT OF THE GENERAL PLAN. The Historic Preservation Commission shall recommend to the Planning Commission a Preservation Element of the General Plan and shall periodically recommend to the Planning Commission proposed amendments to such Preservation Element of the General Plan. Other objectives, policies, and provisions of the General Plan and special area, neighborhood, and other plans designed to carry out the General Plan, and proposed amendments thereto, that are not contained within such Preservation Element but that concern historic preservation shall be referred to the Historic Preservation Commission for its comment and recommendations prior to action by the Planning Commission. When the Planning Commission recommends to the Board of Supervisors for approval or rejection proposed amendments to the General Plan that concern historic preservation, any recommendation or comments of the Historic Preservation Commission on such proposed amendments shall be forwarded to the Board of Supervisors for its information.

REFERRAL OF CERTAIN MATTERS. The following matters shall, prior to passage by the Board of Supervisors, be submitted for written report by the Historic Preservation Commission regarding effects upon historic or cultural resources: ordinances and resolutions concerning historic preservation issues and historic resources; redevelopment project plans; waterfront land use and project plans; and such other matters as may be prescribed by ordinance. If the Planning Commission is required to take action on the matter, the Historic Preservation Commission shall submit any report to the Planning Commission as well as to the Board of Supervisors; otherwise, the Historic Preservation Commission shall submit any report to the Board of Supervisors.

OTHER DUTIES. For proposed projects that may have an impact on historic or cultural resources, the Historic Preservation Commission shall have the authority to review and comment upon environmental documents under the California Environmental Quality Act and the National Environmental Policy Act. The Historic Preservation Commission shall act as the City’s local historic preservation review commission for the purposes of the Certified Local Government Program, may recommend properties for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places, and may review and comment on federal undertakings where authorized under the National Historic Preservation Act. The Historic Preservation Commission shall review and comment upon any agreements proposed under the National Historic Preservation Act where the City is a signatory prior to any approval action on such agreement. The Historic Preservation Commission shall have the authority to oversee and direct the survey and inventory of historic properties.

Once a quorum of members of the Historic Preservation Commission has been originally appointed and approved, the Historic Preservation Commission shall assume any powers and duties assigned to the Landmarks Preservation Advisory Board until the Municipal Code has been amended to reflect the creation of the Historic Preservation Commission.

BUDGET, FEES, DEPARTMENT HEAD, AND STAFF. The provisions of Charter subsections 4.102(3), 4.102(4), 4.102(5), and 4.102(6) shall not apply to the Historic Preservation Commission. The Historic Preservation Commission may review and make recommendations on the Planning Department budget and on any rates, fees, and similar charges with respect to appropriate items coming within the Historic Preservation Commission’s jurisdiction to the department head of the Planning Department or the Planning Commission. The department head of the Planning Department shall assume the powers and duties that would otherwise be executed by an Historic Preservation Commission department head. The Planning Department shall render staff assistance to the Historic Preservation Commission.

History

(Added by Proposition J, 11/4/2008)

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